Imagine being able to create a sculpture on the level of Bernini’s Madonna without having any formal training as a sculptor or an artisan? Sounds laughable right? Truth be told, it actually is for Bernini was a genius in the golden age of 3D sculptors. But with the use of a great 3D printer, hobbyists can definitely get a little closer to reaching Bernini’s perfection.
So today is dedicated to the artisans, sculptors and hobbyist interested in creating expressive art forms and miniatures using the 3D printing process. And if you have already been using a 3D printer without much success, this is also for you.
Here, a comprehensive list of the best 3D printers for manufacturing miniatures and why we consider them the best, will be provided in some detail.
In certain circles, the D7—as it is fondly called—is known as the desktop 3D printer built for intricate designs. This is due to its ability to 3D print fine details at a very high precision level and it accomplishes this because of the features integrated in it. So starting with the WanHao D7 Plus’s technology, it is important to note that you will be working with a Digital Light Processing (DLP) 3d printer.
The D7’s use of DLP technology means that it works with UV light to cure liquid resins thereby forming the finished objects. This curing technique plays a huge role in enhancing the final model it produces and the fact that you can print at a resolution of 35 microns is a testament to its abilities.
The WanHao is made solely from Aluminium which brings the very much needed stability to the 3d printing process.
It is also worth mentioning that at 120 x 70 x 200mm, its build capacity is relatively small but more than enough for 3D printing miniatures. If precision and high details are what you need in a 3D printer, then you can get the WanHao D7 Plus.
When searching for a 3D Printer and you input; durable, affordable and entry-level into your browser’s search engine it will return the FlashForge 3D Creator Pro. Why?
Well, the Creator Pro’s structure is built solely from re-enforced steel and what this means, is that you will be working with a durable 3D printer and mechanical parts that do not tremble or shake when played.
Unlike the WanHao D7, the Creator Pro makes use of Fused Deposit modelling (FDM) technology. This means it extrudes molten plastic filament in layers to create the 3D model.
Talking about extrusion, it is also important to state that its build platform consists of 6.33mm thick aluminium which drastically reduces the possibility of warping. The Creator Pro also provides you with a decent build space (225 x 145 x 150mm) for developing your digital 3D models.
What all the stated features mean, is that the Flashforge Creator Pro’ stability and anti-warping capabilities makes it a great option for 3D printing enthusiasts to manufacture miniatures with.
The LulzBot Mini which I choose to call the LulzBot ‘Mighty’—due to its outstanding features for an affordable 3D printer—truly packs a punch.
This 3D printer is ease of use personified and comes with features that eliminate the need for extensive monitoring. And these features leave artisans with ample time to focus on their core duties while the additive manufacturing process is in full swing.
Starting with its 3D printing technology, the LulzBot Mini makes use of FDM and produces resolutions as fine as 50 microns. This makes it possible to 3D print intricately detailed 3D objects. Another factor to note is that it is basically controlled remotely via your laptop or a mobile app which means you can monitor the printing process regardless of your location.
In terms of size, the Mini is fairly average at 150 x 150 x160mm which is still good enough for 3D printing miniatures. Lastly, if you are a DIY enthusiast, the completely open-source—hardware and software—nature of the LulzBot provides you with the opportunity to enhance your 3D printer as you see fit.
The Finder 3D is a great device for artisans looking to start using a 3D printer for developing artistic ideas. It makes use of the HD IPS touchscreen as a means of controlling the 3D printing process thereby making the entire learning process much easier for beginners.
The FlashForge Finder 3D integrates the use of FDM technology and can produce resolutions of 100microns from a 0.05mm nozzle. The capacity of the Finder 3D is 420 x 420 x 420mm which makes it quite large for your experiments.
If you are considering creating miniatures for commercial reasons, the F160—although more expensive than the other options on the list—is a solid 3D printer that brings durability and precision to the table. It is made from aluminium which provides the needed stability when prints at its maximum speed of 120mm/s.
The CreatBot 160 makes use of FDM printing technique and it integrates a patented motor feeder which keeps the filament from slipping therefore allowing for greater precision. In terms of resolution, you can 3D print objects at 12 microns which is incredible for a desktop 3D printer of its 160 x 160 x 200mm build volume.
Therefore, if you are interested in purchasing an industrial-grade 3D printer to develop your miniatures or other detailed 3D prints at high precision levels, simply click here to get the CreatBot delivered to you.
Creating or should we say manufacturing miniatures of your favourite can be a great pastime for just about anyone. And if you are considering 3D printing as your means of developing these miniatures, then the five 3D printers listed here should serve as an entry point to pursuing your dreams.